I have ESPN, or maybe I’m a little telepathetic.

I am a helper. An organizer, a natural born leader, just plain bossy if you ask my brother. I was super involved in school, student counsel president, leadership, grad, I was all over being in the thick of things. After school it was work, I always end up as a key holder and a schedule maker. Planning fundraisers, parties, theme nights. I can pull a special events licence, orchestrate a silent auction, make sure everyone has food, drink and merriment. I was a great server, anticipating the needs and wants of my customers, before they had to ask. I have a plan, I knack for paying attention to detail, and a great memory. I thrive with a challenge, and adore to think outside the box to solve problems. I need to stop it. Just stop it. I can solve your problems for you, sure. But I need to solve my own problems first. If I do that, I will in the long run be more effective for everyone I encounter. Usually, in the past, I just do things. Above and beyond what most people would expect. I want those I care for around me to have an easy life, and doing or giving makes me feel good. It’s part of my personality.
I wasn’t focused on what I needed or wanted. My fear was that I would be needy, selfish, self absorbed. Just a few chapters into this latest book I realize, I was bankrupting myself to give to others. Mostly out of fear of being judged. I didn’t think I deserved to give to myself. I punished myself, not nourishing my body like I should have, mentally berating myself, being my own evil villain. I’ve been practicing the laugh… I’m quite good at it…
This last week has been effort. Busy at work, I worked 47 hours this week. I easily could have put in more today but I left the rest. I took today off (mostly, just taking a couple hours in the sun to do the liquor order) and didn’t feel guilty about it. I texted Goldy to see if he needed anything in the hospital, when he declined I left it at that. I have been making myself available, if some ASKS for help, but I cannot steam roll people with my affection. Mother and smother. The other day after the gym I wanted to go home, and watch TV, fold laundry. I declined an invitation to hangout. I felt guilty at first… but I need to put my needs and wants at the front of the line. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to hang out, but that I wanted to do that chore for myself. Once I got home I wanted to sit on my half a couch eating peanut butter chocolate ice cream in my lime green onesie… so I did. I didn’t even fold laundry. And that’s OK. Just a few weeks ago I would have negative self-talk ripped myself apart… selfish, lazy, a bad friend. I should have eaten something better, done something productive… I was so mean to me. Yet I would never judge someone else for doing the same thing if the roles were reversed. Mind blowing to come to this realization. I cannot take the credit for this shift, I had help. Last weekend at Cherise’s I was telling her how I felt like all this time I’m taking, for reading, writing, self reflection, I wasn’t there for people. I was failing at keeping up my relationships, (like Ricky-Bobby said in Talladega nights, “if ya ain’t first you’re last”). She gave me the sound advice that it doesn’t alway have to come from my side. I would help, anyone who asked me. This is a true statement, anytime night or day, If someone asks me for help I will be there for them. But what I need to stop doing is helping before I am asked. Interjecting myself, volunteering to give before I give to myself. I can’t read peoples minds, and I don’t want to take away the satisfaction you get when you get there yourself. So I will work on the concept of only helping when asked. And maybe I should pull the good old “codependent no more” off my book shelf and re read it… See Mom, I totally knew what you were thinking…


One thought on “I have ESPN, or maybe I’m a little telepathetic.

  1. NolaM says:

    Yes… well… everyone needs to reread that every 5 years or so.
    I especially like the Quote on her Grief book.

    “There’s a secret to get through loss, pain and grief. If we’re alone we can’t see who we are. When we join the club, other people become the mirror. Through them, we see ourselves and gain an understanding of what we’re going through. Then slowly, real slowly, we learn to accept who we see in the mirror. Then you become the mirror for them; by being honest about who you are, you’ll help them learn to love and accept themselves.”

    I am so very proud of you figuring out this stuff now.
    Codependants should go to meetings like AA people do…
    There tends to be a lot of justification and backsliding involved.
    We can only ever change ourselves.
    The most empowering thing you can be in this life is a good example.
    Take back your love, power and happiness that kids have naturally
    Part of that is that under 8, they meet their own needs first.

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